Clare McIntyre was born in Harrogate, Yorkshire, England, and studied drama at the University of Manchester. She worked as an actress with the pioneering feminist Women's Theatre Group, after participating in Nottingham Playhouse's theatre-in-education team. She played small parts in films such as The Pirates of Penzance, Hotel du Lac, and A Fish Called Wanda, and then turned to writing. Her first major stage play, a comedy called Low Level Panic, was produced by the Royal Court Theatre in 1988 and won the Samuel Beckett Theatre Award. My Heart's a Suitcase, her next work, had its premiere at the Royal Court in 1990 and earned her the London Critics Circle Theatre Award and the Evening Standard's Award for Most Promising Playwright. Subsequent works included The Thickness of Skin (1996) and The Maths Tutor (2003). In addition, she wrote scripts for EastEnders on television and radio plays that included Walls of Silence (1993) and Noisy Bodies (1999). From 1991 to 1998, she taught a playwriting course at the University of Birmingham. She died of multiple sclerosis in 2009 at the age of 57.